6 Pet Snakes That Don’t Always Eat Mice (Pictures)

While pet snakes are typically depicted as eating mice or rats, there are various types of snakes that make great pets, that don’t have to feed on rodents. There are pet snakes that can be fed diets full of insects, larvae, fish, or amphibians. In this article we’re going to learn about a few of those species and look at pictures of them. Let’s take a look!

6 Pet Snakes That Don’t Eat Mice

Here are six types of snakes that don’t have to eat mice that can make great pets. Whether you are a beginner snake owner or have some more experience under your belt, you may want to check out the following species.

1. Rough Green Snake

image by Patrick Feller via Flickr | CC BY 2.0
  • Scientific name: Opheodrys aestivus
  • Diet: moths, crickets, spiders, beetles
  • Experience level: beginner

Rough green snakes are great pets for those that have never owned a snake before. They don’t eat any rodents, and instead have a diet that consists of small insects. Rough green snakes can be fed crickets, beetles, and spiders.

They are docile creatures, and in the rare case they do bite it is completely harmless. The bite might sting a little, but their mouths are so small the pain subsides quickly.

While these snakes enjoy insects, they should not be fed too much live food at once. They could get stressed, and may stop eating completely. Rough green snakes can reach around 46 inches long as adults.

2. Garter Snake

  • Scientific name: Thamnophis
  • Diet: spiders, crickets, fish, frogs, earthworms
  • Experience level: beginner

Garter snakes are known for their checkered patterning, and are small animals that can make great pets. As adults, they will be around 39 inches long or shorter, and do not feed on mice.

They can be fed insects like spiders and crickets, and also eat fish, earthworms, slugs, and frogs. As pets, they can be fed a range of bugs and small animals, but some insects should be cut up before giving them to your snake.

Garter snakes can make great pets for beginners as they are easy to handle and docile. They are also commonly found in yards and neighborhoods across North America. If your garter snake does bite you for some reason, it is completely harmless.

3. Brahminy Blind Snake

Brahminy’s blind snake | image by Rushen via Flickr | CC BY-SA 2.0
  • Scientific name: Indotyphlops braminus
  • Diet: cricket larvae, ant eggs
  • Experience level: beginner to intermediate

Flowerpot snakes, aka Brahminy blind snakes, are one of the smallest types of pet snakes you can find, but many beginners may not have heard of them before. As adults, they are barely longer than six inches, and come from India.

They were distributed to other regions of the world, including the southern United States, by hiding in the roots of flowers being shipped. These snakes can not eat large insects, and should any be fed cricket larvae or freshly hatched crickets.

They can also eat ant eggs. Flowerpot snakes can’t bite, making them decent pets for beginner pet owners. They may be more well suited for more advanced owners due to their specific diets.

4. African Egg Eating Snake

Central African egg eating snake | image by Ben Phalan via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY 4.0
  • Scientific name: Dasypeltis fasciata
  • Diet: chicken eggs
  • Experience level: beginner to intermediate

Just as the name suggests, African egg-eating snakes feed on eggs instead of rodents like many other snake species do. They are a native to Africa, and mostly found in wooded habitats.

These snakes will swallow chicken eggs whole, thanks to how widely they can open their mouths. Eggs are the main part of this animal’s diet, and they have been known to go a few months between meals.

However, these snakes need regular access to water. Given the African egg-eating snakes‘ unique diet and eating habits, they are better pets for snake owners with a little more experience. They are not venomous, and present no harm if they do bite a person. These snakes only reach around 30 inches long as adults.

5. Water Snake

common water snake eating a fish
  • Scientific name: Nerodia sipedon
  • Diet: fish, frogs, insects
  • Experience level: advanced

Water snakes do not feed on mice or other rodents, which is mainly due to the fact that they live near water. Due to their preferred habitats, water snakes mostly eat fish, frogs, worms, and bugs.

These animals tend to be more aggressive than other types of snakes, so they should only be kept as pets by advanced snake owners. They might never get used to being handled, and are likely to strike out if someone gets too close.

When kept as pets, these snakes will need access to plenty of water. Northern water snakes are the most likely water snake to be kept as a pet.

6. Smooth Green Snake

smooth green snake
smooth green snake | credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Northeast Region
  • Scientific name: Opheodrys vernalis
  • Diet: spiders, worms, crickets, grasshoppers
  • Experience level: beginner

Smooth green snakes can be great pets for beginners, similar to rough green snakes. These are small animals, reaching around 20 inches long as adults, and do not feed on rodents like many types of snakes.

Instead, they eat insects such as crickets, grasshoppers, and spiders. Smooth green snakes are docile, and prefer to escape threats instead of strike out. They are non venomous, and have harmless bites on the off chance that they do strike out at their owners.

Even though these animals can be good pet snakes for beginners, they should still be handled as little as possible. This is because smooth green snakes will get stressed or overwhelmed if handled too much.


If you want a pet snake but don’t like the idea of feeding them mice and other rodents, there are multiple great snakes out there to consider. There are pet snakes perfect for beginners and advanced owners that have a wide-ranging diet, including bugs, insect larvae, fish, and amphibians.

Robert from ReptileJam

Hey, I'm Robert, and I have a true passion for reptiles that began when I was just 10 years old. My parents bought me my first pet snake as a birthday present, which sparked my interest in learning more about them. read more...